PEOPLE from businesses across Winchester took a day off work to volunteer at Trinity, the day centre for the homeless.

The event was organised by Community First as part of their employee volunteering scheme.

Janet Duggan, volunteer service manager from Community First, said: “This is the second business community day organised for smaller businesses in and around Winchester who often don’t have the same opportunity to volunteer as a group, unlike larger corporations.

“By bringing together a range of businesses they got to make a difference to the community whilst having an opportunity to network.”

Winchester-based charity Community First has over 600 members that are also charities and they help provide support, training, advice, transport and volunteers for these charities.

Janet Duggan said: “We have a number of volunteers from all sorts of backgrounds at Trinity, we have a lawyer Mike Dyer from Taylor Fordyce who has been in court all week and is now gardening and we have Rachel Niddrie, an interior designer who is making lunch in the kitchen.

“We do an average three volunteers days like this a week. Next week Rathbone Wealth Investment are volunteering all their staff of about 40 for a whole week at a Shepherds Down special school in Compton.”

Volunteer Rachel Niddrie said: “This is my first time here. It’s been great. We are given free rein so we are making chicken pasta bake and fruit salad. It is a group effort. We saw what food was available and decided what to make when we arrived.”

Also helping in the kitchen was Philippa Thompson, manager of The Dower House Nursing Home in Headbourne Worthy. She said: “It’s been great and it’s been good getting to know other business people.”

If your business would like to get involved with the employee volunteering scheme email or telephone 0300 500 8085 ext 9724.